How the crisis is driving changes in how companies communicate

October 17, 2008

The economic crisis, as a NYT article pointed out, is essentially a crisis of trust. Organizations of all kinds, particularly finance, insurance and those gov agencies now intervening, are under intense scrutiny and the actions they take operate on an instant news scale. Yesterday the market swung from 400 points down to 400 points up. Every minute counts in this hyper-freaked out environment.

I long for a voice on the national stage–no, global stage–to say with strength, confidence and credibility that “the only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” But it is not likely to happen. That is something we–the 6 billion of us–will have to figure out for ourselves.

What it means now is that the old rules of communication about financial matters go out the window. The staid rules of Wall Street are gone forever I think. Quarterly reports are as dead as the news cycle. The only thing that matters now in this instant financial news world, is maintaining a constant, steady, relevant and gold-standard credible information flow.

The question I have is, are the investor communication folks, the lawyers, the accountants and C-suite execs–plus regulators–aware of this urgent new need and can they respond? If you don’t know what I mean–how do they feel about a very transparent, very real daily blog?


One Response to “How the crisis is driving changes in how companies communicate”

  1. Gerald, CNBC just ran an article supportive of your points, focused more on how well — or poorly — our leaders have been communicating about the economic crisis. You can find that article at:

    Of course, I was kinda pleased to be quoted in it! Best to you for survival during this difficult time for all of us.

    Jonathan Bernstein
    Bernstein Crisis Management, Inc.

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